WoodStock: Festival of Failure Celebrates Forty

By: Guest Authors

By: Greg Halvorson

Woodstock, man, cool…. A festival of music, love, of TRUE FREEDOM. Right?


On this, the 40th anniversary of that glorified gathering, thoughts come to mind, none centered around the U.S. Constitution which, last time I checked, mentions something about “rights.” To listen to the media, you’d think Woodstock, a gathering of dead-beats, anti-war radicals, dope-addicts and drifters, was the modern equivalent of the Philadelphia Convention, a free forum throng denouncing British rule. But the way I see it, its glorification is absurd. Call me prude, hell, call me CHRISTIAN, but I don’t know how three days of acquiring crabs from strangers inside a mud-pit, while tripping on L.S.D., is exalted. Yes, everyone has a right to grow hair passed their fanny, worship false idols, and rail against war; yet, if you take a close look, the festival was less about individual freedom than it was about hedonism and, frankly, goofing off.

Free love? This marvel gave us Roe vs. Wade, abortion on demand, and a loosening of bedrock Traditional Values.

Rock ‘n Roll? Who doesn’t love a good story about brash icons choking on vomit? Without rock, it’s a distinct possibility that such cultural pillars as hip-hop and rap would never have made moguls of losers, and we certainly wouldn’t know and praise the word “bling.” There are those who will read this and bristle, crow “nostalgia,” and to them I suggest a Reality (not a Welfare) Check. The Summer of ’69, embodied by runaways leaving home and legions of protesters burning the flag, created today’s entitlement surge. Free love, the precursor to free food, housing, health care, to FREE EVERYTHING, supported by entrepreneurs (the evil rich), is anything but free. What we discovered there on Yurgur’s farm—communal squalor, reckless indulgence, and utopian graft—is a bridge to Nowhere Good. Losers are losers when acting like losers, and in getting back to REALITY, I would remind the Dope-fiends of Yesteryear that nostalgia is no substitute for insolent behavior, and freedom bears no resemblance to porn. Perhaps I’m squeamish, but when I see “organizers” committing fraud in more places than you can shake a stick at, and when Black Panthers are given a free-ride by Eric Holder, and when eco-Fascists, in the name of Global Warming, cram a Frightmare through Congress, I lament the bi-product of hippie-dippy do-nothings with their head in the clouds.

On this, Woodstock’s 40th anniversary, where have they gone? Surely, to California, where the Utopian Ideal has been run so deep into dirt that it, in fact, may hit China. To Oregon, where “green jobs” touted by the hippie-generation are holding the line at 12% unemployment. To Vermont, where pedophiles are coddled as societal “victims”; and of course to Massachusetts, whose state motto, “Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietam (By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty), is so far removed from the bohemian ethic that, like Orwell said, “up may be down.”

Let’s call it what it is: gross, intemperate, narcissistic and inane. Loafers in collective rebellion against “the Establishment” accomplished what by dropping their drawers? A self-serving society paranoid of success, fatuity-in-cycle and dilution of right and wrong. Woodstock, for all the media-driven gloss, was no more than a twisted orgy among tetherless nitwits incapable of sound judgment. In the words of Bob Dylan, whose absence from the venue spared us from hearing him, “You’re an idiot, babe, it’s a wonder that you still know how to breath.”

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